It’s what comes to our minds when we go to the mall and buy new pairs of shoes and wonder, “Can I afford to this?” However, buying these pairs of shoes isn’t what we remember in the long run. It’s all of those days spent with your friends that we look back and think fondly about, such as going to the amusement park. So, we come down to the question: “Which matters more, money or experience?”
Money and Happiness
(Image Source: Piccadilly Market)
When we spend money it is usually to make yourself feel better or feel happier. According to an article by the Wall Street Journal, researchers said that yes, money does indeed influence the happiness of our lives. However, I should mention that money can “buy” you happiness only if it influences how you spend our time in a positive way. This means that when it comes to buying that new football jersey or buying that amusement park ticket, many of us end up thinking, “If I get to the amusement park, it will be just one short moment of excitement that will be over at some point. However, if I bought the football jersey, at least I have that football jersey forever.” Before you spend the money, you may be much more satisfied with buying the merchandise that you are about to buy. However, a few weeks after the money is spent, most people will begin to realise that the memory is much makes you feel more happy overall. On the contrary, this article pointed out that in this research, simply spending money and not saving can lead to misery.
Although I am just a teenage boy who’s just trying to figure out who I am, I believe that my opinion on the true value of money is worth sharing. As far as money goes, I don’t really believe in spending it on material things such as expensive shoes, watches and all the many other luxurious things that we may buy for ourselves. Instead, I think that it should be spent on memories, such as buying a ticket to watch that movie that you’ve really wanted to see, or spending it on going to the amusement park with your friends. When the Times Square Ball’s about to drop in New York on New Year’s Eve and I look back at the previous year, all the significant memories that vividly stand out to me are all of those laborious days practicing with my soccer team, hoping that one day we may have the chance to win the league. Or, going to Canada’s Wonderland during the summer and having one of my friends pass out on one of the rides. As you may have noticed, all of these moments I cherish are memories instead of things. I do not fondly remember the day that I bought a new pair of shoes, nor my Christmas presents from the previous year.
Does Getting Older Mean You Are Wiser With Money?
(Image Source: Scott Griessel)
Some of us may have the perception that as we get older, we become wiser. That is, making better decisions with your money. According to an article by the Wall Street Journal, they found that every single age group makes financial mistakes. We just make different kinds of mistakes at every age. For instance, in your 20s, adults may not be making investments or starting companies, even if it is the optimal time to do so. When adults reach their 30s, researchers for the Wall Street Journal claim that as adults begin to have kids, they want to continue the lifestyle that their parents brought to them. Hence, taking on an immense amount of debt. When adults reach their 40s, the debts that they took on in their 30s begin to haunt them and continue to do so into their 50s. When adults hit their 60s and 70s, you would think that they are very well off with their retirement savings. However, with the lifespan of humans increasing, they begin to realise that the money that they have may not be enough to keep up with living standards.
As I mentioned earlier, I am simply just a 13 year old. Hence, I have not gone through the possibilities of retirement savings and debt. However, I can relate to the fact that as I get older, I still make mistakes with my money. For instance, when I was younger, I used to buy toys and such that I didn’t really need but I wanted simply because my friends had one. Before I knew it, I was using up all my monthly allowance in a snap. As I grew older, I learned to save money and spend my money on things that I really wanted or to pay for my expenses such as lunch or going to the movies. However, what I began to notice was that as I was so overly obsessed with the idea of saving money, I was passing on opportunities of going to the mall with my friends just because I was worried about spending too much money. Hence, most of the money that I earned began to simply sit in my bank account. Now, when the occasion arises, I am more lenient on spending money. For instance, if my friends are eating lunch outside, I would do so as well now. In the past, I would not do so and eat lunch at home, therefore missing all of the conversations I could have had.
Some of us may think that money leads us to happiness and ultimate satisfaction because it can buy us many great things. We may also think that as we get older, we spend our money more wisely. However, at times, we should just simply we should simply embrace what we love to do and consider that money is just one way to achieve what you want to do.
As Henry David Thoreau once said, “The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it.”